Eccles primary school closure consultation ends

Eccles, Norfolk. Eccles, Hargham and Wilby Primary School ANL-140704-194104009
Eccles, Norfolk. Eccles, Hargham and Wilby Primary School ANL-140704-194104009

A consultation has ended into the proposed closure of a south Norfolk primary school

Eccles, Hargham and Wilby Primary School, a Church of England School has, according to the Diocese, and Norfolk County Council, seen a decline in pupil numbers. They said that changes to school funding were making it increasingly difficult to manage the budget, and “to bring about sustained improvement in educational outcomes for its pupils.”

The consultation with the school stakeholders ran from February 24 to last Friday.

A campaign has started in the village to save the school, but now the decision is in the hands of Norfolk County Council’s cabinet member for schools, Mick Castle.

He will view the responses from the consultation and decide whether to proceed to the next stage of the process.

Should he decide that it is appropriate to do so, there will be a four-week representation period before he makes a final decision, which is likely to be made public some time in June, according to the County Council.

A previous Ofsted had ranked the school as good, in 2011, but this was under the old framework of inspections, and it is now widely considered to be more rigorous.

This January, there were 27 pupils on roll, of whom only nine live in the catchment area. A further 26 potential pupils are choosing to go elsewhere.